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Economy & Politics

This Nigerian kid emerges Africa’s youngest Microsoft specialist 

Damilare Akano, a 6-year-old Nigeran pupil has emerged as Africa’s youngest Microsoft specialist in the Certiport international certification




Damilare Akano, a 6-year-old Nigeran pupil has emerged as Africa’s youngest Microsoft specialist in the Certiport international certification. Akano’s emergence came after triumphing over 200 other students that participated in a month-long summer camp tagged: ‘Nextgen IT Experts’ organised by a Learning Systems Institute, New Horizons in Lagos recently. 

The pupils, alongside Akano were trained in various information and communication technology (ICT), courses like Microsoft, Multimedia, Robotics Engineering, Drone Technology, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT) and Coding, amongst others. 

Akano, however, came top in the Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2016 examinations with a score of 871 out of 1000 points. He was followed by a 10-year-old Masters Toluwalese Kwaku and eight-year-old Master Kolawole Akano, who scored 825 and 800 respectively. 

Speaking on Akano’s emergence as winner as the youngest Microsoft specialist, the Managing Director of New Horizons, Tim Akano made known that the achievement of the 6-year-old did not come as a surprise but bears testimony to excellence which New Horizons is known. 

[READ ALSO: Central Bank disbursed N299 billion loans through these Agricultural schemes in 2018]

What you should know: The programme provides industry-leading assessments of skills and knowledge through Microsoft’s new project-based testing, giving students and professionals real-world exercises to appraise their understanding of Microsoft Office. This guarantees that every certified user has demonstrated the ability to command the full features and functionality of Microsoft Office, preparing them for future academic or workforce opportunities. 

More so, this feat gives students and workforce candidates the power to chart their own course, fulfill their ambition, and realise their potential.  

Why this matter: Akano’s triumph, however, came in the heat of controversies surrounding Nigerians at the global stage. In recent times, Nigerians have been marked for one bad thing or the other in the social media space, which has been very costly for other individuals who are descent in their activities. 


Akano’s news which has widely been celebrated is believed that it will play a key role in changing the recent perception about Nigerians. 

Chidinma holds a degree in Mass communication from Caleb University Lagos and a Masters in view in Public Relations. She strongly believes in self development which has made her volunteer with an NGO on girl child development. She loves writing, reading and travelling. You may contact her via - [email protected]

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    Economy & Politics

    Insecurity: Nigeria needs restructuring, state policing – Southern Governors

    Governors from 17 states in Southern Nigeria have stated that Nigeria must be restructured to reflect true federalism leading to state policing.



    Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde

    Governors from 17 states in Southern Nigeria have stated that Nigeria must be restructured to reflect true federalism leading to state policing. They also called for change in the revenue allocation formula of the nation, and a review of government appointments relating to federal character, plus a national dialogue to address greater inclusiveness in existing governance arrangements.

    This was disclosed in a statement by Oyo state Governor, Seyi Makinde, after 17 governors from the Southern part of Nigeria held the Southern Governors Forum Meeting at the Delta State Government House in Asaba, on Tuesday.

    What Seyi Makinde said

    “We discussed various national issues including security and restructuring. In view of the incursions of armed herders, criminals and bandits, we resolved to ban open grazing in all of Southern Nigeria.

    Nigeria needs to be restructured to reflect true federalism leading to state policing and a change in the revenue allocation formula of the nation. We also recommended the establishment of ports in other states to address the congestion of the Apapa Port,” Makinde said.

    He added that the Governors advised the FG to convoke a national dialogue to address greater inclusiveness in existing governance arrangements, and recommended a review of appointments into Federal Government agencies, including security agencies, to reflect federal character.

    On open grazing of cattle

    In a review of the statement signed by the Governors, they called for an end to open cattle grazing in the south stating:

    “The incursion of armed herders, criminals and bandits into the Southern part of the country has presented a severe security challenge such that citizens are not able to live their normal lives. The meeting resolved that open grazing of cattle be banned across Southern Nigeria,” the Governors said.

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    Economy & Politics

    Full text of Minister of Information’s speech on National Security

    All Nigerians should continue to support our security agencies, who today face the added task of having to watch their backs while working to protect us.



    Covid-19: Nigeria now has over 100 testing laboratories - FG


    Good morning gentlemen, and thank you for once again honouring our invitation.

    2. It is no longer news that our dear nation is facing security challenges.However, I have read comments saying @NigeriaGov is overwhelmed and doesn’t have a clue as to how to tackle the challenges.

    Some have even gone as far as suggesting a truncation of the democratic order, a clearly treasonable stance.

    3. Well, I am here today to assure all Nigerians that while the government acknowledges the security challenges we face at this time, from terrorism to kidnaping,

    …banditry and farmer-herder conflict, it is definitely not overwhelmed and indeed it
    has the wherewithal, as you will see in the days ahead, to confront the challenges headlong and restore law and order, peace and security.

    4. One of the most difficult things to do, for a democratically-elected government, is to use the instruments of coercion against its own people. For example, while the nation’s military have superior firepower over the rag tag band of Boko Haram and ISWA,

    the terrorists most often than not operate among the populace, either in our villages or towns, hence the military, in tackling them, is usually careful to avoid collateral damage. The same
    applies to the kidnappers who abduct our school children.


    Usually, the location of the kidnappers is not unknown to the security forces, but they still have to exercise caution in order not to hurt the same children they are trying to rescue.

    Despite these inhibitions, the security forces have the wherewithal to decisively tackle the challenges.

    5. Now, there is a growing dangerous trend which I will like to comment on. It is the practice of launching deadly attacks against the nation’s security personnel.

    Soldiers as well as police, customs and other security agents have been killed and maimed in some parts of the country in this growing trend of targeting security forces.

    I want to say, unequivocally, that any attack on our security men and women is an attack on the state and a declaration of war against the nation. It follows, therefore, that this will be countered with overwhelming force.

    When those whose responsibility it is to protect us are themselves being subjected to mindless attacks, it can only be for one reason only: To instill fear and evoke a sense of pervasive insecurity among the people.

    Whether known or unknown gunmen, those engaged in
    this dastardly act will pay dearly for their actions.

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    6. Gentlemen, the government realizes that the security challenges we face today are systemic, hence has – in addition to kinetic efforts
    – also embarked on various non-kinetic measures to most effectively tackle the challenges.

    Recently, specifically on April 8th 2021, we held a #FGTownHallMeeting on national security in Kaduna, after which we came out with an implementable, 10-point agenda.

    i. That the governance of human society should be based on Law rather than the whims and caprices of human beings and must be obeyed by all as all persons are equal before the law including the law givers.

    ii. That there is an urgent need for political restructuring and not separation.

    iii. That the Judiciary be decentralized and reformed through Constitutional Amendment to remove the unitary control of the Superior Courts.

    iv. That governments at all levels should ensure free, qualitative and compulsory Primary Education for all children of school age.

    v. That the Military, Police and other Security Agencies should be expanded in number, retrained, provided with modern equipment and technology to cope with emerging security challenges.

    vi. That both religious and traditional leaders should encourage and promote inter-marriages for unity as contained in the 1999 Constitution as amended, Article 15, 3(c)…


    …which prescribes inter-marriage among persons from different places of origin, or of different religious, ethnic or linguistic association or ties.


    vii. That the establishment of State Police should be supported by the National and State Houses of Assembly to enable State Governments have firm control in addressing security issues.

    viii. That Traditional Rulers should be given their age-long role of maintaining peace and security within their domain.

    ix. That the Local Government Autonomy be actualized to enable them have control of their areas including the ungoverned spaces in tackling security challenges.

    x. And finally that the Farmers/Herders clashes be addressed by establishment of ranches, grazing reserves with modern amenities to check the trans-humans of the herders.

    7. As far as a national stakeholders’ engagement is concerned, the town hall meeting fits that bill. In a complete departure from our town hall meeting format, we invited panellists and discussants from outside the government .

    The Lead Presenter was Prof. Jibrin Ibrahim, and the four discussants were Mrs Ibukun Awosika, the erstwhile
    Chairperson of the First Bank; Prof. Saka Nuru, a renowned veterinary surgeon;

    Prof Chudi Uwazuruike, an academic and a former member of the House of Representatives, and Prof Kokunre Eghafona, also from

    The stakeholders who attended included all the service chiefs, members of the legislative and executive arms of government,
    civil society organizations, traditional and religious leaders, women and youth groups as well as labour.

    It is therefore baffling that some
    commentators give the impression that the Administration is not engaging with the various stakeholders to find a lasting solution to the challenges facing the nation.

    8. Now, we didn’t just engage in a talk shop. We have taken those resolutions to the National Economic Council, Chaired by His Excellency the Vice President, and which also includes all the state governors.

    As a prelude to adopting the recommendations, the NEC has directed all state governors to organize state-wide consultation on them, and then revert to the Council in its next meeting.

    9. Of course, you are all aware that the Honourable Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice has announced that the Federal Government is set to prosecute 400 suspects arrested for allegedly funding terrorism.

    This is unprecedented and its a testament to the government’s determination to decisively tackle terrorism and other violent crimes.

    10. While the government continues with these efforts to restore peace and security continues, I want to appeal to all of us to play our part in lowering the palpable tension in the polity as a result of the security challenges.

    The first step is to tone down the rhetoric. While the media must continue to carry out its primary responsibility to inform, criticize and stimulate debate, it must also realize that it can only carry out this responsibility in an atmosphere of peace and security.

    I am therefore appealing to the media to play its part in dousing the pervasive tension. Lending your platforms to uncompromising separatists and die-hard pessimists about the survival
    of our nation can only overheat the polity and aggravate the security challenges.

    This is not a call for censorship. It is a call for responsibility, in the national interest.

    11. For the avoidance of doubt, the government retains total confidence in the ability of our security forces to tackle the
    security challenges we are facing now, whether it is terrorism, banditry, kidnapping or even the farmer-herder conflict.

    We therefore appeal to all Nigerians to continue to support our security agencies, who today face the added task of having to watch their backs while working to protect us. The least we can do is to give them our unalloyed support.

    12. I thank you for your kind attention. I will now take your questions, which must be on the issues that I have addressed here.

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